James left last night for a business trip that has been on the calendar for weeks. Since Kyle started school, this trip has been on the back of my mind causing me anxiety (surprise surprise!). Every day that it got closer the more anxiety I felt-especially because the mornings with Kyle have been such a struggle…with most resulting in James having to muscle Kyle to his feet and then onto the bus. The thought of having to try and get Kyle on the bus by myself without James’muscle was scary and seemed near impossible. I tried to give James every reason why he shouldn’t go, but I knew he had to (I even prayed that his seat would be given away, you know like all those stories recently of airlines giving people’s seats away? Yeah, well it didn’t work). So at 7:30 last night off he went to the airport, I’m sure feeling bad he was leaving me so anxiety ridden.
Whitney started running a fever right before James left, which only added more stress! I went to bed last night feeling positive about the next day. I prayed real hard that Kyle wouldn’t drop the the ground (once he’s on the ground-he knows I can’t physically pick him up so he won’t move…and I know I’m screwed at that point. I prayed that even if it wasn’t an easy transition that he would at least get on the bus. I had talked to the bigger boys warning them I’d need them in the morning to watch sick whitney. I had erika make me a first and then chart with a picture of the bus and a picture of grandpas truck (Kyle LOVES riding in grandpas truck so I thought that would be reinforcing-first he gets on the bus then after school he gets a ride in grandpas truck). I felt very prepared! And surprisingly not that anxious. 👍🏼
The morning came and it went somewhat smooth. Nothing out of the ordinary. Kyle seemed super excited about grandpas truck-which made me even more hopeful that he’d get on the bus. Whitney was still running a fever and feeling sick but she was ok laying on the couch so I didn’t wake the boys up. I sat with Kyle and did the usual routine of talking him through the steps of getting on the bus while we waited. I was getting anxious but still feeling positive. He was gonna get on that bus! I did everything I could. I prayed so hard! I had family members praying! Friends praying! We were good.
The bus showed up and Kyle did his usual and sat for a minute and then got up and I quickly reminded him what he was working for-grandpas truck! He started to scream no! Several times then walked over to the front of the driveway and….sat on the ground. 😩 Noooooooo! This was the absolute worst thing. This was what I prayed for NOT to happen. This is what can’t happen because he knows I can’t get him up.
I ran upstairs at quick as possible and screamed for Cody! Hoping maybe having him get on the bus would help Kyle get on there. So poor Cody half asleep stubbled outside to try to lure his big brother onto the bus, who was planted on the driveway with no intention of moving. At this point it’s been almost 10 minutes and I know Jorge is needing to leave. Janine was trying everything to get him up. To no avail. Cody was trying everything. Nothing was working. Nothing. Janine looked at me and said I don’t think we can wait any longer.
The 2 things that couldn’t happen today happened. Kyle dropped and refused to get up. And the bus left him.
As the bus drove away. Kyle sitting in my driveway, the tears just started to flow. Cody put his little arms around my waste and said “I’m so sorry mom”.
I was so mad at Kyle. I was so mad at God. I was mad that I didn’t have enough physical strength to pick my own kid up. I was mad that MY husband (who I need at home) was on a business trip and not someone else. I was mad that I have to deal with this. I was mad that my life is so hard. I was mad that I prayed and I felt like it went on deaf ears. I was mad that Kyle does this. I was mad that I was crying. I was mad that life is unfair. I was mad that things can’t be easy just for 3 days while I’m solo. I was mad that getting my son to school is still such a struggle. I was mad that as soon as the bus was out of sight Kyle got up and walked inside.
I walked in the house sobbing. Whitney was now crying because her stomach hurt. Kyle knew I was mad at him so he didn’t ask for his iPad and eventually went up to his room. I sat on the couch crying as I held my sick baby and feeling sorry for myself. A few minutes later my daughter started throwing up. Awesome.
I knew that I had to get Kyle to school, otherwise he’d think that if puts up a big enough fight and the bus leaves that means he doesn’t have to go to school. So I called my mom (who thankfully lives 2 min away and willing to drop everything when I need her) to come sit with my sick baby so I could drive my son to school-knowing I was in for another fight.
Thankfully I got Kyle into the car with no issues (I think he knew I was really mad at him). As soon as I got into the turning lane to turn left towards his school, the crying started…for both of us. Him because I think he thought he broke me and I wasn’t going to take him to school and me because I knew I was in for another long battle with him. We pulled in and out came his teacher.
She tried to get him to calm down with not much success. She and I talked for a few minutes…I kept my sunglasses on so she wouldn’t see my swollen wet eyes. She went back to the classroom while I sat in the car with Kyle. I silently cried and he sat silently in the back, people watching. I felt myself beginning to feel anger at him and at this situation and at God for not making this morning easier. I wasn’t able to be at home with my sick baby all because Kyle wouldn’t get on the bus!
After a few minutes the teacher and a few other people from the classroom came out to see what they could do. Which wasn’t much. We were out there for what seemed like an eternity. Trying to talk him out of the car. Finally I got in on Whitney’s side and nudged him gently and he got out. I immediately crawled into the driver seat and drove off as quickly as possible. In my rear view mirror I could see my 14 year old stubborn son sitting on the concrete in the parking lot crying.
As I drove off, I began to sob. Why does this have to be so hard? Why can’t he just get on the bus? Why is it that no matter how consistent I am with him, he isn’t consistent? Why didnt God hear my pleas? Why? Why? Why?
I got half way home and found myself yelling at God. In all my trials, I don’t think I’ve ever been mad at God. Today I felt angry. I felt like I needed a tender mercy and I was left on my driveway with nothing but tears and defeat. I felt like at the start of today I was running on faith and as I approached my house, after 45 minutes of fighting to get my 14 year old non verbal autistic son out of my car and into school, my faith had run dry. Today I felt so alone. I felt defeated. And I felt angry.
Erika rearranged her schedule last week so she could be here today to lend me extra support, knowing James would be gone and it might be hard on me. She showed up and we talked about the morning and what went wrong and what I can try tomorrow. She told me how great I did today in following through even though I was frustrated and emotional. She took over Kyle the rest of the afternoon so I didn’t have to worry about him. We came up with a plan for tomorrow so that if it’s another hard day 😏 I at least have a solid plan in place (that includes my awesome baby brother who when I asked if he would meet me at the school if I needed him to help muscle Kyle into the class, he said no problem). As erika was leaving tonight, she was pumping me up and wishing me good luck, she said, “sometimes it takes an epic fail like today for us to realize what it is we need to do to make it better for next time”.
I’m trying so hard not to let this “epic fail” make me quit life….but it’s really hard. Especially with all the previous fails that I thought were epic fails until today’s real epic fail. I’m trying hard not to let today affect my faith, but it’s hard. Especially when I begged and pleaded for today to go better than it did. I’m trying to gear myself up for tomorrow, not knowing what will happen, but that is hard. I’m trying really hard to humble myself and get on my knees and pray again but that is so hard too.
Sometimes I am grateful for the journey we are on with Kyle. I can see the lessons he teaches us so clearly. But sometimes the lessons aren’t so clear and I’m not so grateful. Some days I wish that my lessons learned in this life didn’t have to be through fragile x and autism. Some days I wish that I had it easier. Especially when my husband is gone on a business trip for 3 days and I have to try to get my kid on a bus that he refuses to get on.
Hoping for a better tomorrow…cuz I really need a better tomorrow.